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RALPH BROWN DRAUGHON
Digitized by the Internet Archive
in 2010 with funding from
Lyrasis IVIembers and Sloan Foundation
aEORGE M. EVERHART
NEW YORK: / (/^ ((
HARPER & BROTHEgS, f^'^*
FRANKLIN SQUARE. "^
1 85 8.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in tlie year 1858, by
HAEPER & BEOTHEES,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern
District of New York.
gAtPH I80WN iRAUGHON UWA«Y
AUIURN UNIVERSITY. ALABAMA 36849
TO HIS PUPILS
WHO HAVE BEEN, OR MAT HEREAFTER BE
%\ \\i funtsuilh l^mah C0ll^p,
THESE EFFUSIONS OF HIS EARLY YOUTH.
ARE AFFECTIONATELY DEDICATED
BY THE AUTHOR.
It is i^roper that I should disclaim anything like
poetical aspii-ation in the ^publication of these poems.
They are given to the world from higher and purer
considerations. A desire to prepare a pleasant
souvenir for my pupils, and to gratify some friends,
alone prompted me to reconstruct and arrange these
effusions of my youth.
HuNTSViLLE Female College,
Huntsville, Ala., October 1, 185S.
G. M. E.
Engraving of Huntsville Female College, ....
Dbdicatoby, ■ . . 3
A Mountain View, 40
The Prayer of "Washington, 50
To Eloquence, 56
A Little Girl — A Lineal Descendant op Pocahontas, . 58
The Maiden by the Sea, 62
The Two Rills, 69
Lost Star op Evening, '?4
Death Bed op Napoleon, 83
The Voice op God, 91
Death of the First Born in Egypt, . » . . 95
To THE Pillar op Fire, . . . . ■ . . 101
The Spirit Tejiple, 103
Purity, ............ 106
To a Young Lady, Lamenting that She must grow Old, 108
The Prayer op Elijah, 110
The Old Year, 113
The fairest flowers that bloom of Eden lost
Remind us, while they type the Paradise
Of Heaven. The noblest spirits, too, remind
Us of our lost estate of purity
And love, and tell us of the happier land
Where saints and angels dwell ; and these do
The golden links that bind our nature now
To what it was, and what it yet may be.
Where is one golden link that glitters bright
In spirit's rusted chain ? once sadly cried
A mournful youth while musing on the ills
Of frail humanity. But ere the words
Had died upon the air, a fancied form,
Of lovelier mien than nymph, or goddess fair,
Within his presence stood. The snowy robe
Of purity she wore, and in her hands
The olive branch of peace she held. Like stars,
Her eyes resplendent shone, yet melting mild
With loving tenderness almost divine.
Adorned with beauty radiant as the light,
She, like a fabled goddess, spoke in tones
Of heavenly melody, kind words of love.
And turned to part for aye. But loudly cried
The youthful dreamer—" Tell me, first, fair
Thy name, and whence thou art ?" In accents
She said — " My name on earth was Josephine,
My home was sunny France." And with these
She vanished into air, and left the youth
To revel in the thoughts her magic form
Had waked. A fountain fresh within his breast
Gushed forth, and bore upon its silvery tide
The memories of one whose life did form
The golden link in spirit's rusted chain,
That glittered brightly there. That shining
Was Josepliine, the gentle happy child,
Who, loving all, soon won the love of all.
Whether upon West India's flowery isles,
Where servant children clustered round to
Her raven locks with garlands green, and wept
To hear her tell of loved ones in the grave,
Or 'mid the splendors of a royal home.
'T was Josephine, the loving wife and true.
Whether to cheer Napoleon's troubled breast.
Amid the wiles and ills of war, and 'rouse his
To mightier deeds ; or sit beside him crowned
An Empress on the Throne of France, as one
Whom subjects loved and blessed, and mon-
Their royal homage paid. 'T was Josephine,
The friend of wretchedness and want, who like
An angel, from the courts of Heaven, sent
To cheer and soothe, and comfort give to all,
Dispensed her blessings in the humble cot,
The prison damp, and wheresoe'er the heart
Of suffering bled from poverty or grief.
Two things there are will test the pure in
heart — '
From humble state to gain life's proudest fame,
And then to feel life's keenest woe ; to live
With happiest sunshine in the heart, or grope
Through sorrow's darkest gloom. As floods of
All dazzling, bhnding to the eyes of one
-Emerging from the shade, so does the blaze
Of royal splendor oft bewilder head
And heart, until they reel in drunkenness.
Not so with Josephine. The throne to her
Was only great because its splendor shone
To light her pathway to the darksome haunts
Of wretchedness unknown. As golden fruit,
When bruised, will rot, so oft amid the pomp
Of wealth, to feel hfe's keenest woe, will sink
The buoyant heart, and all its love will die.
Not SO with Josephine. Her deepest woe,
Like hottest fire that yields the purest gold,
Refined her love, and purified her heart.
The coronation of that mighty man,
Napoleon, and his loving wife ; and then.
The day that saw the wife forsaken and
Napoleon false, the sunlight of the joy
, Display, and darkness of the woe of her
Whose life, indeed, doth form the golden link
That glitters bright in spirit's rusted chain.
The scene was majestic, in Paris, the day
Napoleon was crowned with imperial sway :
Past ages such glory had never unrolled —
A grandeur, the future may never behold !
The heavens were azure, the morning was
And the plumes of ten thousand men waved in
In costumes all glittering with gem and with
More brilliant, they seemed, than the warriors
Apart they all stood — ^in the distance, away, —
As host meeting host in full battle array ;
A chariot of glass witli the king and the
And hundreds ivith princes, passed slowly he-
The royal procession then ended their way ;
And Napoleon was crowned, on that mem'rable
Within a vast temple thus honored of old —
Embellished with hangings of purple and gold.
A pile built of marble, and studded with stone.
The pearl of the sea, — made the beautiful
There knelt the great warrior and offered his
And himself placed the crown upon his own
While Josephine bowed, in the meekness of
The imperial crown of Napoleon, to share,
Her smiles passed away like the sun-light of
That fleeth afar from the shadows of even.
Why should she then weep, 'neath the crown
of a queen,
'Mid ineffable splendors that compassed the
Why should she then weep, with her lord at
The king of the realm, and a continent's pride ?
A chord had .been* touched in that bosom of
By an angel unseen, from the kingdom above ;
And the music it made was prophetic of woe,
That tear-drops of sadness caused freely to
The rites are now over. She rises a queen,
With her features made bright by a beautiful
Of happiest emotions tliat beam on her face
As, through clouds of the night, the glad stars,
that we trace.
Why emotions so happy — so beautiful now,
When sorrow and woe had just darkened her
The angel to soothe her a message had given,
And the smiles on her face were reflections
The message was this : " On the mightiest
That stands on the earth, in its grandeur, alone,
Thou sittest a queen to fulfill the design
Of God, to this infidel kingdom of thine.
Surrounded by princes and nobles that came
Napoleon to crown, and his kingdom proclaim,
Awoke in her memory visions of yore,
Resplendent with glory, though blotted with
As lightnings that gleam on the face of the
So scenes of the past in her memory swept by :
The time came in view when adorned as a
She stood by a youth in his valor and pride.
No treasures of gold, and no birth-right of
Grave strength to his spirit, or worth to his
A stranger was he from the land of his birth —
His fortune the sword, and his home the wide
She knew by the lightning that flashed from
On fortune and friends he would scorn to rely ;
The power within was the strength he would
And to him, its great kingdoms, all Europe
Then swiftly through memory passed visions
Napoleon, the hero, 'mid conflict and gore ;
Imperial in will, and in action the same.
He made Europe his realm, and immortal his
'Twas not a vain glory that flooded her
With a tide of emotion she could not con-
But feelings divine through her bosom were
Napoleon, she thought, had been favored of
Not favored to drench every hill-top and plain,
With the tears of the widow, and blood of the
That ambition might triumph — might sit on a
Enveloped in splendor, unrivalled, alone !
22 JOSEPHINE. ■ •
But favored was he with this sceptre of might,
(By redressing the wrong, and sustaining the
To rend the dark curtains of error and shame,
That millions may bask in a heavenly flame !
Reflections like these had transported her soul
With ecstatic emotions she could not control ;
The sky of her future was cloudless, I ween,
O'erhending a beautiful valley of green.
Time passed away. Now like a veil
That hung upon the brow of heaven,
And shadows made within the dale,
Still darker than the shades of even,
Thus, some foreboding woe made dark the
So brightly pictured in the mind of Josephine.
Within a cliamber riclily clad,
Adorned with gold and glittering gem,
A woman sat alone, and sad.
Beneath a royal diadem.
Her bosom heaved, and sighs of woe
Came trembling from her throbbing heart,
As if, within, a suffering throe
Would rend the thread of life apart.
At length the day had nearly fled,
But lingered still the woman there,
One hand upon her aching head,
The other raised to God in prayer.
• JOSEPHINE. 26
This royal one, and who was she ?
And what the woe within her breast ?
'T was Josephine — the light and free —
By some foreboded iU, oppressed.
Now, darkness o'er the earth unfurled
His sable banner on the air.
That waved in triumph o'er the world.
While mortals slumbered careless there.
But sleep to her had lost its charm,
And stOl she lingers as before :
She starts ! she lists ! a strange alarm
She hears without her chamber-door.
'T is some one rapping — rapping now.
And calling Josephine by name ;
With beating heart and pallid brow.
She, trembling, answers to the same.
She knew the voice. She oped the door.
Napoleon entered, marked with grief;
And Josephine, he stood before.
And trembled like an aspen leaf.
A fearful silence hushed the night,
As if to hear words pass between ;
The tapers burned with flickering light,
As if they trembled at the scene.
No words the awful silence broke.
But sighs that breathed from cither's breast.
Some dark and dreadful suffering, spoke,
Too painful then to be expressed.
Like statues, there unmoved, they stand.
Till tears from each begin to start.
And then Napoleon takes her hand,
And lays it fondly on his heart.
And says — " My Josephine, my wife !
The dear companion of my youth —
The guardian angel of my hfe,
Whose bosom swells with love and truth.
" Thou hast heen, art, and shalt be still,
Far dearer than the world to me ;
But fate is stronger than my will,
And blindly severs me from thee."
A thunderbolt had rived her heart-
She reeled, and fell upon the floor ;
And life seemed ready to depart.
As paleness spread her features o'er.
Dismayed, Napoleon loudly cried^
The palace haUs his mandates rung ;
And lords came promptly to his side,
And o'er the pulseless body hung.
Upon her couch they softly laid
The swooning body of the queen ;
Then others came with kindly aid,
And life restored to Josephine.
The king withdrew. He could not stand
Before that lovely one of heaven,
Whose heart, a bolt from his own hand.
Just then so cruelly had riven.
His mighty soul, that never quailed
Upon the bloody battle plain.
Now shrank within — his spirit failed.
And writhed in all the throes of pain.
With folded arms, the palace hall,
In grief, he paced till morning light.
And o'er his soul was hung a pall
Of darkness, darker than the night.
But the conceit Ms mind liad wove,
Renewed his thirst for royal fame —
A thirst that blasted peace and love,
To give posterity his name.
Ambition dire ! thy will has driven
The very angels from the sky —
Has marred the happiness of heaven,
And blighted Eden's purity.
Upon thy altar hearts have bled,
Fond hopes, like withered leaves, lie strown :
And hellish deeds have marked thy tread,
Where'er thy fearful steps have gone.
Slowly a fortniglit passed away,
As if it lingered to allay
The pains which rent that gentle heart.
But the unhappy day of doom,
Now came with all its fearful gloom,
The dearest tie to rend apart.
Within the Tuilleries' grand saloon, unhung with
gem and gold,
A mournful throng in silence sat the drama to
No gorgeous drapery hung around, no smiling
As when the lovely queen was crowned, and
graced Napoleon's throne.
A cloud of sorrow clothed the scene with far
Than if, as mourners of the queen, they lin-
gered at her tomb.
The silence of the grave prevailed : the lips
spake not a word ;
Almost pulsation ceased to beat, and breathing
scarce was heard.
A table stood with vacant chair within the
mournful space ;
The written doom of faith and love lay on its
Why wait they all in silence still ? And why
that empty chair ?
Behold ! a door flies open wide, and Josephine
. is there.
She nears the fat^ spot, among the kings and
lords and all,
And sadly sits beneath the gloom o'erhanging
like a pall.
Deep, heaving sighs from every breast, the •
dreadful silence broke ;
Napoleon quailed within his heart, and shud-
dered at the stroke.
Apart he stood with folded arms, his head upon
his breast ;
And on a pillar leaned his form, his trembhng
limbs to rest.
That beaming brow wMcb shone so bright amid
the battle din,
Is pallid from corroding pain that rankles deep
As some strong monarch of the wood that bat-
tled with the storm.
That proudly turned the fiercest gale by its
Until itself drew down from heaven a thunder-
bolt of fire
That rived its heart, and bowed its head be-
neath the fearful ire,
Hard by so did Napoleon seem, though con-
queror of the land,
A mournful wreck of wretchedness by his own
The written doom of faith and love, a courtier
loudly read ;
Then Josephine, with streaming eyes, rose up
and sweetly said :
" For France I sacrifice my love, an offering
from my heart, —
Though hard the stroke that severs it, and
rends the tie apart."
She said no more ; but on the scroll, in silence,
wrote her name ;
The deed was done, the die was cast, tftat told
Napoleon's shame !
What heart could thus its love resign, its hap-
And would not curse the cruel fate that plunged
it in the woe ?
But, noble q^ueen ! she kissed the rod that drove
her from the throne,
She blessed the ruthless hand that smote ; and,
saint-like, grieved alone.
Time passed away ; and though bereft of splen-
dor and of fame.
Ten thousand paid her homage still ; ten thou-
sand blessed her name j '
And kings hung o'er her dying bed, and heard
her dying prayer,
And angels bore her soul away, in heaven a
crown to wear.
Thus, 'mid the darkness of the past, a ray of
light was seen.
That wrote upon the dreamer's heart the name
of Josephine —
The name that tuned his humble lyre to utter
in its strain,
She is the link that glitters bright in spirit's
The scroll that dissevered their union of love,
A parchment of doom to Napoleon did prove ;
The moment fair Josephine penned there her
The glory began to depart from his fame.
That strange light of destiny radiant afar,
Like the splendor that streams from some beau-
Began now to wane, and to fade, and to die,
Till the light of its glory was lost to his eye.
The eagle, whose pinions rode high on the
And battled with clouds in their terrible
From his heavenward flight, by the arrow of
Fell wounded and slain, amid tempest and
Like Satan, to hell, from the kingdom of
From the throne into exile. Napoleon was
On an isle of the ocean deserted and drear,
He died unlamented, unwept with a tear.
How deeply vile the heart is,
How treacherous the heart is,
Of faithless, fallen man !
Like a bright star in yonder sky.
That smiles upon the pilgrim's eye
With radiant beams of truth and love,
When azure spans the arch above, —
But let a storm-cloud roll between.
The smiling orb 's no longer seen.
Thus, Friendship 's true when all is bright.
But false, when sorrow dims the light."
How deeply vile the heart is,
How treacherous the heart is.
Of faithless, fallen man 1
Like a cool fountain's dashing spray
Upon the desert's trackless way,
That lures the weary wanderer now
To slake his thirst, and cool his hrow;
Then, as he stoops to sip the spray.
Into the sand it sinks away.
Thus, Friendship lures but to decoy
The heart that thirsts for soothing joy.
How deeply vile the heart is,
How treacherous the heart is,
Of faithless, fallen man !
Like the rich bloom of some fair flower
Whose leaves unfold to deck the bower
Of beauty, and in one short hour,
If Boreas blows his icy breath
Upon its fragile form, to death
It yields its loveliness and bloom.
Thus, human friendship finds an early tomb
When adverse winds blow from their cloud of
A MOUNTAIN VIEW
In early youth
I dropped a tear upon my mother's grave,
And hade adieu to childhood's home ; and far
To distant lands I went my way. And as
I journeyed on, a rugged mountain, vast,
Whose summit lofty mingled with the sky,
Before me stretched its massive frame, as far
As eye could see. I reached its hase, stooped
A bubbling fount, took one cool draught, and,
My guide, began to scale the pillared height.
A bridle pathway, like a spider's thread
Around some lofty pillar, wound toward
The top its spiral course. We safely trod
A MOUNTAIN" VIEW. 41
The narrow path, till wearied by the toil,
And heated hy the noon-day's sun. Upon
A moss-grown rock, I sat mysehP to rest
Awhile, and gaze on nature there. That scene
I never can forget. 'T was deeply writ
By God's own fingers on my heart, and e'en
While years must fade away, it brightens still.
Before me lay a landscape long and wide,
Embracing forest wild, and verdant fields,
And winding streams, and placid lakes. The
Those leafy worlds, whose bosoms rolled be-
The gale, seemed like a troubled sea. Those
Of vernal green, adorned with golden hues,
Spread far away ; and seemed as if their wide
Expanse a lovely carpet was, laid o'er
The earth by seraphs' lily hands, on which
For seraphs' feet to walk. The river's flow
(Anon by forests hid) went rippling on :
Beneath the sun's bright smile, it sparkled like
42 A MOUNTAIN VIEW.
A diamond vale. A lake of crystal glowed
With dazzling light : I saw its silvery waves
Go trembling on, and fancied that, mayhap,
Ten thousand viewless forms were dancing on
Its pearly plain.
Majestic grandeur, charmed
My soul, from every view. Upon my right
Was granite, piled, and piled, until its height
Was wreathed with clouds. If God's eternal
Has pillars vast, methought that mighty pile
Of granite, one.
Upon my left a dread
Ravine yawned open wide. 'T was filled with
Below me waved the giant oaks, whose roots
Were planted in the dark abyss. How strange
The scene ! A forest wrapped in midnight
While all above is clothed in light. My guide
A MOUNTAIN VIEW. 43
Broke in upon the charm that held my heart,
And hade me go.
The shades of eve were on
The mountain's breast, while on the air rolled
Of thundering sound. A rock o'erhanging
We passed, and lo ! the scene ! A cascade in
The sky ! There, hke a sheet of silver, wove
By angel hands, tied fast to granite cliffs,
And hung athwart the dark ravine, appeared
That falling flood. The dashing spray threw
Upon the flower-clad rocks, eternal dews
That sparkled in their dimpled folds, like gems.
Merging its pale and misty brow deep in
A sea of clouds, a vapory pillar rose
On high, like some vast marble pyramid.
We turned to scale the summit of the mount.
'T was evening now. We stood amid the air.
While clouds, like walls of snow, did form a vast
44 A MOUNTAIN VIEW.
Pavilion canopied Iby heaven. The king
Of day had wheeled his flaming chariot to
The western sky ; and cast above, and on
The earth, as swift it rolled its course amid
The viewless stars, a flood of gorgeous rays.
That penciled bright our airy dome with hues
Of gold. And twilight, hovering o'er the earth,
The shadows of whose wings dissolved the dyes
Of radiant brilliancy — revealed the splendors of
The sky. A sapphire plain spread far away
Through universal space — ^the paradise
Of God, whose flowerets fair are radiant worlds ;
And roses bright are shining suns ! Upon
This scene, subhme, unconsciously I gazed
Till fancy wearied in her rapid flight.
And slumber wooed me to repose ; and there
I slept upon a downy couch of clouds,
Encurtained by the drapery folds of night
Embroidered rich with glittering stars.
Such scenes are magic charms upon the heart,
That fling around the spirit silken bands.
As a lone star at midniglit iUumines the storm.
The earth was made lovely by Woman's fair
Like flowers that brighten some desolate plain,
Her smiles and caresses give pleasure to pain.
What heart has ne'er felt sweet emotions of
That soften the soul, like the notes of the
What heart has ne'er warmed in its magical
Or thrilled with dehght, at a fond cherished
46 WOMAN. '
The wife to remember, as youthful and gay,
Is a pleasure most charming to life's beaten
One feels the first love that enraptured his
And through him emotions of happiness roll.
In fancy, he visits the beautiful bowers.
Where he oft, with his loved one, culled roses
and flowers ;
Her rich raven tresses, that streamed on the
The smile on her hps, and her forehead so
Her symmetrical form, and her dark flashing
That rivalled in beauty her star in the sky ;
The same lay of love that she gleefully sung.
Till the green leafy arches with melody
rung, — 4
The transporting moment he sat by her side,
And won her young heart to become his fair
The long silent pause, then the fond look of
That smiled on his soul, like a smile from
Her lily white hand that he pressed in his
When she whispered, " I'm thine, and do love
thee alone !"
Are bright in his memory to bless and to
To strew o'er his path reminiscences dear.
More beautiful charms has fair Woman beside,
Than those that may crown her as virgin and
The pathway of Hfe, dreary, rugged, and chill,
# She smooths with affection, and lessens the ill.
'Md want, or aflfliction, disease, or distress,
The wife watclies fondly to comfort and bless.
A cave is a palace, a hut is a dome,
A wild is a garden, a desert a home.
K thon a companion hast, lovely and fair,
Who feels for thy sorrow, and Hghtens thy
The rose-buds of kindness that blossom in
J Are nourished with love by the hand of the
_ And who has not felt a dear mothers fond
Or heard not his name in her breathings of
Who watched o'er thy cradle ? who guarded thy
Who led thy young heart to the fountain of
When pangs of disease had prostrated thee
Who leaned o'er thy couch, and who softened
thy woe ?
When fortune had frowned, and the world had
Who, still, was thy friend, who caressed thee
and smiled ?
Though mountains and valleys between you
Or over her grave thou may'st mournfully sigh.
The love for that mother can never be riven,
But filial affection shall strengthen in heaven.
THE PKAYER OF WASHINGTON.
In Valley Forge, bruised o'er with many a scar,
an army stood,
Their forms half clad, their feet unshod,^ and
dripping red with blood ;
Upon the rough and frozen earth they lay them
down to sleep.
Though wintry winds and drifts of snow fast
o'er their slumbers sweep ;
The great and small, the old and young, alike
endure the woe.
For they are bound by pUghted faith against a
PRAYER OF WASHINGTON. 51
The tattered camp with curtains rent, and flap-
ping in the air ;
The hungry moan, and trembling groan, and
warrior's dreamy prayer ;
■ The stately form, that strides along, .with
sword and waving crest.
That paces mid the slumbering host, and beats
upon his breast,
To memory tell a story sad, a story drear and
Of times gone by, when freemen bled, and
ghastly hunger smiled.
The night is dark, and thickening gloom hm
gathered o'er the dale ;
The stars have shrunk away in dread, and hid
behind the veil
Of lowering clouds, surcharged with gloom, that
spread themselves afar ;
And curtained is the quiet moon, to nestle with
52 . PRAYEB OF WASHINGTON.
No sound of gladness greets you there, to stay
the rising fear,
WMle howling winds, and dying groans, anon
fall on the ear.
Amid this scene of death and gloom, behold
that warrior hold,
In anguish, kneeling there, amid the tempest
dark and cold ;
With hands uplifted to the skies, he hreathes a
The accents deep, now roll away, and tremble
on the air :
"0 God," he cries, "Thou King of kings, —
^ Thou Lord of earth and heaven.
My country. Oh, my country, save, and bid its
chains be riven !
"Proud tyrants rule with cruel sway, while
bleeding thousands die ;
And in the chains of slavery, three groaning
PRAYER OF WASHINGTON. 53
To Thee — thou just and holy One, thou Prince
of peace and war ;
To save our own, our native land, now welter-
ing in its gore !
Grant us the boon of freedom dear ! break Thou
the tyrants' rod !
Strike off the fetters from our land, and own us
Thine, God !
'^ Then peace and love, like purling streams,
would flow through valleys fair ;
And every hill would send to heaven the voice
of praise and prayer :
Our Father, Friend, and Lord of Hosts, if Thou
wilt be our shield.
Our little band, with dauntless hearts, will
brave the battle-field ;
Our cry shall ring from shore to shore, and
echo o'er the sea.
That all the earth may know we fight, for God,
and liberty !"
54 PRAYER OF WASHINGTON.
The warrior ceased his ardent prayer, and up-
ward turned his eyes,
And saw a radiant star appear, far gleaming
through the skies.
Through darkness dense, and storms of wrath,
the star, refulgent, shone,
And bore a message in its beams, from God's
But now a loud "Amen" is heard, and then
that martial form
Stands up again, in majesty, to wrestle with
And still he gazed upon that star, amid the
No clouds o'erspr^ad its beaming brow, that
brightened as it smiled.
In every ray he saw a hope, until its flood of
Flashed through the sky, and drove away the
storm and cloud of night : ,
PRAYER OF WASHINGTON. 55
On every bloody field of death, in every vic-
That star of hope lit up the path of nohle
Is not thy strength the mystic charm
That can the firmest will disarm ?
We listen to thy winning voice —
With thy own spirit we rejoice :
We feel the warmth that heats thy soul,
As floods of passion through us roll ;
We drop with thee the scalding tear ;
We start with dread, when thou dost fear.
As some light barque of which we dream,
That floats upon a mighty stream,
So, on thy ever onward flow
Of crested waves, we go — we go.
Now, gliding on a current mild —
Then rushing swift on torrents wUd,
We 're borne along, thy willing slave.
Upon thy broad resistless wave !
A LITTLE GIEL
(A LINEAL DESCENDANT OF POCAHONTAS).
I NEVER shall forget that balmy hour.
It was a summer morn, and all things smiled
Beneath a radiant sun and azure sky.
Within a flowery Eden, to regale
My spirit on its fragrant beauty, I
Had wandered forth. My fancy twines about
My heart a wreath of full ten thousand charms,
When nature wears the garniture of heaven.
I thought it was a spot where angels weU
Might love to be, and feast on fragrance — sip
Away the pearly dew-drop sparkling bright,
And dally with the playful flowers that dance
Upon the breeze, and bask amid those haunts
Of glowing beauty. As I gently wound
My way 'neath arching domes of foliage green,
'Mid flowers blushing like a maiden's cheek,
And waving boughs and fruits of golden hue,
I 'spied a httle wanderer half hid
'Among the clustering vines and roses bright.
I softly neared, and paused ; and silently
I gazed unseen upon the infant one
Whose tiny form all grace, and wondrous fair.
Amid the bloom and beauty seemed more like
A fairy child, than one of earth.
The little rambler sported gaily as
A bird, her perfect form and fair, revealed
The noblest blood of Indian- kings ; and woke
A magic train of thought within my breast,
Whose fragments lie in chaos on my heart.
Save these, I there embalmed in song.
That heavenly virtue can not flow
From vein to vein with gliding years,
They need not tell me, for I know
The Indian-angel's heart is Jiers ;
60 A LITTLE GIRL.
As well deny the mine its gem,
Or parent rose, its blooming stem.
But spirit, warm with love and truth.
And pregnant with celestial thought,
Transmits the freshness of its youth,
And through the lapse of time is brought.
As well deny the sun his beam.
Or bubbUng fount, its crystal stream.
Her bright eye flashed with genius rare,
Beneath her locks of raven dye.
Like shining stars, through midnight air,
That twinkle in the vaulted sky :
So dark the tress — so broad the brow,
I said, " a royal child art thou !"
And when the little rambler fled,
A gleeful laugh rung on the air :
With blooming wreath upon her head.
And rose ^uds clustering in her hair.
A LITTLE GIRL. 61
She seemed more like a thing of love,
Or some bright wanderer from above.
She ran beside my musing bower,
Her features beamed with joy, and smiled;
The loveliest rose she bore, or flower.
Was not so lovely as the child ;
But on her tiny feet ran free.
As ripples dance upon the sea.
THE MAIDEN BY THE SEA.
A STILL and pulseless spot. The playful
Has sung itself to sleep. The swinging bough
No longer dips the briny wave. The oaks —
Huge, howling monsters of the wood — stand
As adamant. An arch of azure spans
A boundless sea, with scarce a wandering cloud
To dot its spotless brow. A lovely girl
Amid the shadows of declining day.
Upon the pebbly margin of a world
Gf waters, stands in silent thought, and there
Intently gazes on the placid sea.
And then upon the evening sky. The star
Of day, like some vast ball suspended high
THE MAIDEN BY THE SEA. 63
In air, and heated by the breath of God,
With crimson glows -, and then, as it we're, its
Is severed from the sky ; and gliding down
Toward the lulling tide, a sea of gold
Is shed upon a sea of pearl. A lone
And fleecy cloud seems clinging fast to its
Own native wave ; and pausing on the sea,
A stream of glory tinges bright its soft
And downy pinions with fair rainbow hues.
And there it glows, as if a fragment of
The drapery folds about the throne of God
Had been asunder rent, to robe its soft
And fragile form. The ocean sleeps, as if
From elemental strife 'tis weary now.
But lo ! the baU of fire falls on the sea !
The water stirs beneath the crimson glow,
And opens wide its jaws to swallow down
The golden fruit ; and all is calm again.
The silence deep, that rests upon the sea.
Rests on that Maiden's heart. Before her lies
64 THE MAIDEN BY THE SEA.
The emblem true of vast eternity.
The deepening shadows gathering o'er the sea,
To her, appear like spectres of the dead.
The semblance of the silent sleep of death,
The awful stillness seems. She fain would flee
Away, to break the awe that chains her soul;
But, e'en the solemn grandeur of the scene
Allures her still, like some bewitching charm.
She lingers there, till night's dark robe en-
The world, and, one by one, the glittering stars
Are seen, anon, amid the thickening gloom. .
And now the ebon pall of darkness casts
Its shadow o'er the earth and sea. The Maid,
In wildest transport, gazing far o'er fields
Of ether, lit by million torches — " piles
Of crystal light" — uplifts her tiny hands
In praise. Then, looking far away upon
The sleeping flood, a million diadems —
The symbol crowns of angels — glimmer in
The bosom of that placid sea. The Maid
Departing, turns and waves her. lily hand
THE MAIDEN BY THE SEA 65
Toward the sea and sky, and sweetly sings
An ode to sable Night. —
Darkness ! though thou canst not be
The conqueror of the noon-day Hght,
Yet greater far art thou to me,
Thou princely monarch of the night.
Upon thy mantle glitter bright
The radiant glories of the sky ;
Ten thousand worlds of dazzling light,
Adorn the throne of God on high !
1 love to breathe thy silent air,
Made fragrant by the dew of even.
And wish that I could linger, where
I ever might commune with heaven.
There is a rapture of the soul
That sways the heart without control :
It softens every iU of time,
And breathes a charm of hhss sublime ;
It melts the rugged spirit even,
And bathes the mind with dews of Heaven ;
'Tis Music that enchains the heart,
And bids our cares and ills depart.
In listening to its sacred strains,
We revel on Elysian plains.
And hear cerulean arches ring
With sweetest notes that angels sing.
'Tis sacred song that, by its lay,
Our harsher being melts away.
'Neath Musics slow and solemn wave,
We think of loved ones in the grave,
And sigh o'er tender scenes of yore,
Feeling as we ne'er felt before.
When soft and mellow tones arrest.
And echo through the lover's breast,
How deep the spell, yet sweet and mild !
He sees the look when Mary smiled.
And sang the song — the tender lay.
That took his youthful heart away.
When deep and thrilling notes arouse,
The battle-field the thoughts espouse ;
We hear the tramp of legions there —
See banners waving on the air ;
We hear the deafening shouts of war,
And see the crimson pools of gore ;
Our passions burn, and leap, and bound,
And struggle on that battle-ground.
THE TWO RILLS.
By chance two crystal rills did meet
Within a mountain's breast ;
They bathed awhile their dimpled feet,
The other each addressed.
" Why haste thee so, good brother mine,
And whither dost thou go ?
What madness stirs that breast of thine,
And makes thy waters flow ? "
" If here I stay, the earth wiU drink
The life-blood of my heart.
And soon my youthful form will shrink-
Unknown, my life depart.
" I wish not thus to pass away
Within these caverns drear —
To live for nought, to die for aye,
And no one shed a tear.
" I 'm going to the sunny land,
Thence to the mighty sea,
Though granite walls on every hand,
• And long the way may he.
" No madness stirs this breast of mine-
Nor idle end my goal ;
My will is moved by one divine,
And hence my waters roll.
" Come, go with me, my brother fail'.
We 'U join our ripphng tide ;
We '11 better bear the toil and care,
As on our way we glide."
" I cannot go, thou foolish one,
My pleasure here shall be ;
This cool retreat of rest alone,
Is worth your world to me."
They hade adieu with dimpled hands,
When gladly, it that sped
Heard all its waves, in playful hands,
Sing sweetly as they fled.
A hovering spirit, watching o'er,
Saw every barrier fall.
As wave on wave the granite wore.
And toppled down its wall.
At length upon the mountain's side,
A sparkhng fountain gushed.
Whose waters rolled a purling tide,
And down the valleys rushed.
And as it flowed, loud swelled its song,
Until the hill-tops rang ;
It woke the slumbering founts along,
And up their bubbles sprang.
Its current swelled at every hill-
Through every vaUey green,
Until the little rippling rill
A river flowed, I ween.
The gentle song that once it sung,
Is now a deafening peal ;
And every hill-top is a tongue.
Its greatness to reveal.
And loudly did the sea proclaim
The joy that thrilled his breast.
When to his heaving bosom came
This son with foaming crest.
The brother rill that chose to stay
Beneath the mountain side,
Unhonored now has passed away,
Where all its waters dried.
A lesson, learn then, laggard youth,
From these two simple rills —
Press onward, in the way of truth-
Wear down the barrier hills.
Until Eternity shall hail
Thy spirit to the sky !
But linger on — ^thine all shall fail —
Thy name and being die !
LOST STAR OF EVENING.
The Evening Star is the theme of my lay,
Although it has gone from the West;
The thoughts it implanted have passed not
But bloom in the warmth of my breast.
When my life was all love, and my fancy was
How fondly I gazed on the star
That smiled, as a queen, with her garland of
More brilliant than others, by far.
" Fair Queen of the Evening," I uttered in
" Let me bask in the smiles of thy love.
LOST STAR OF EVENING. 75
For thou art divinest of all tlie bright throng
That reign in the regions above."
"Fair Queen of the Evening!" so softly I
" Wilt thou list to a song of my heart ?
Wilt thou let a fond lover his story confide,
Ere the smiles of thy beauty depart ?
" The fairest of earth, like thyself, of the sky,
And as gay as a flower of May,
Is the girl of my love, vdth her bright laughing
That rivals thine own beaming ray.
" On a soft, balmy eve, while she leaned on my
I pointed to thee from afar,
And told her the thought of some magical
That called thee my destiny-star.
76 LOST STAR OF EVENING.
" And then, by the splendor that shone from
In the whispering accents of love.
She plighted her hand, and renewed me her
That faithful, as then, she would prove."
" Fair Queen of the Evening, now radiant and
If thou art the lamp of my hope.
Oh cease not to smile with thy heavenly
Nor bid me in darkness to grope !
"Fair Queen of the Sky! in thy palace of
Let the West be for ever thy throne !
Shine radiantly on, and my loved one is
But vanish — my loved one is gone !"
LOST STAR OF EVENING. 77
As the days fled away, and the months in their
I gazed on the lone star of even.
And saw the bright vision fade slowly, and
And finally drop out of heaven.
God ! what darkness enclouded my
When the star of my destiny fell —
When the terror of fate hurled its fiery
And the pain made my bosom a hell !
The sky was bereft of the Beautiful One,
And tear-drops from heaven were shed ;
My heart was alone^ for my loved one had
To dwell in the tombs of the dead.
78 LOST STAR OF EVENING.
Lost star of the Evening — the theme of my
Although it has gone from the sky,
Awakes fond emotions, that gleefully throng,
But press from my bosom a sigh.
' 'Tis slander, whose tongue outvenoms all the worms of Nile.
Foul foe of man — ^thon fiend of hellish birth —
Thou who didst taint the innocence of earth,
Defaming God with serpent tongue of guile.
When man was pure, and paradise did smile ;
List ! while some features of thy form I trace
And see the vileness in thy hideous face.
The heart may hate and burn with envy dire,
And burn and burn, but viewless is the fire ;
But let foul Slander ope her lips of gall.
Then, envious words in burning torrents fall.
As lavas, that from craters roll afar —
That strip the hills, and lovely valleys mar —
So envy, through the lips of slander vile,
Bears desolation in a flood of gmle
On all around — destroys the happy hour.
And crushes truth beneath its hellish power.
Foul fiend of hell ! We know the subtle art
That thou canst wield within the human heart.
Thou dost not always show thy visage dire —
Belching forth envy, as the crater, fire.
An angel oft ! and fond is thy caress.
But murder lurks, when thou wouldst seem to
The close embrace but hides the fearful dart
That probes the unsuspecting to the heart.
And more, foul fiend ! HabUiments divine,
And smiling brow, and honied words are tliine.
The flood of praise is checked — the lips are
And uttered as they close that envious —
Well canst thou tell of noble actions done.
Of many virtues, radiant as the sun ;
And basely twine a blooming wreath of fame,
That thou may'st surer blight or blast the
Ah, base traducer ! thou a Judas art, —
A friend to kiss — a devil at the heart —
A whitened tomb, of polished marble made,
In which are rottening bones of dead men
A demon, thou, in garments dyed above.
And wearing on thy brow a seraph's love.
Hast gone where sin before had never trod,
And blasted Eden in the face of God.
Although so dreadful in thine own dark form.
Equipped with lightning and the raging storm.
More fearful thou, to mask thy hideous face
With smiles that would a heavenly vision
To utter honied tones, and call him friend,
Whose noble deeds, and many virtues blend —
Then, damn his name, by that mean, little
That — ^'^huf — by which the fairest fame is
Vile wretch ! Thou well dost know thy subtle
No fiend of hell can better act his part.
First bleach the form, if thou would'st better
The blot with which thou'dst stain its purity.
Ofttimes is this thy rule of action dire.
To scatter through the earth thy brands of
Foul foe of man ! — thou vilest curse of time,
That gave sin birth — that urges on to crime,
Away ! away ! Thou offspring vile of heU,
Back to perdition, where thy kindred dwell.
DEATH-BED OF NAPOLEON.
In a palace-like mansion all garnitured o'er
With canvas that glowed with the past,
A large stately painting, I paused there before,
And gazed as one riveted fast.
Napoleon lay rigidly sleeping in death ;
His features were clammy and chill ;
His forehead was pallid, and hushed was his
And his body was pulseless and still.
As I gazed on the warrior there lifeless and
I sighed as I thought of the tomb ;
Within the dark prison, the timid and bold,
Alike must lie down in the gloom.
84 DEATH-BED OP NAPOLEON.
Then swift-winged fancy, with pinions of light,
In the realms of historical fame,
Napoleon beheld, in her mystical flight,
The hero of glory and shame !
At Brienne she heard the young Corsican's
Beneath a cool, fairy-like bower.
That his arm might be strong, and his spirit
To scale the bright summit of power.
Napoleon she saw, when his youth had gone by,
With his eye firmly fixed on a throne,
Mid an ocean of blood, and a world's wailing
Pressing dauntlessly onward and on.
She saw him at length as an emperor crowned,
With a dynasty built upon bones ;
And heard the loud shout of the thousands
As it rolled away mingled with groans.
DEATH-BED OF NAPOLEON. 85
At Moscow she saw the bold warrior again,
(With armies and banners unfurled ;)
His heart throbbed in hope of unlimited reign —
To sit on the throne of the world.
O'er this city of grandeur that spread far away,
She, hovering, paused to behold —
And saw his dense legions, in battle array,
Approaching in numbers untold.
As thousands beneath the dark mantle of night,
In silence withdrew from their homes ;
Their possessions and gold they neglected in
And fired that city of domes.
When the morning was gone, and the noon-day
To welcome the shadows of even ;
The heart of that city a volcano burned,
And heaved up its lava to heaven.
86- DEATH-BED OF NAPOLEON.
When the dark wing of midnight had shadowed
A furious tempest swept by ;
The flames of that burning it franticly hurled,
Till its billows were pelting the sky.
"And what is it Hke," she exclaimed in dis-
" But a blast from the nostrils of God,
That has shattered the portals of hell, to dis-
The waves of its fathomless flood ?"
As a sea in its wrath, so that ocean of fire.
Rolling on with its turbulent groans.
Spake the thunderings of heU when it reeled
'neath the ire
Of the demons that battled for thrones.
The scene was too dread; she could linger no
But fled from the terrible view :
DEATH-BED OF NAPOLEON. 87
Now a moment she gazed on that ill-fated
Where Bonaparte lost Waterloo !
Then far o'er the sea, on an isle in the deep
Where the warrior and monarch was bound,
For Napoleon, there Fancy would linger and
And sigh as she hovered around.
When the monarch lay down on his pallet to
Where once a volcano alone
Had heaved in its strength, belching lava on
But now quite extinguished and gone, —
She thought as a furnace his spirit had flamed,
Whose surges raged mighty and dire.
But now, like the isle, it need only be named
As the wreck of an extinguished fire.
THE VOICE OF GOD,
The breeze in its glee, like a wave on the sea,
Sports gaily away ; and it sings us a lay
Of innocent joy, where no sorrows alloy —
Of ages of hliss, like a long honied kiss —
Of spirit as free as a child in its glee,
A playing 'neath bowers of fragrance and
And this is the Voice of God.
The storm as it howls from the cloud as it
And blackens the sky while it rages on high,
Or, sweeping the vale with its desolate gale,
In a mad-man like groan, makes the horrible
92 THE VOICE OF GOD,
That tells of the woe where the wicked must
In darkness to dwell 'mid the wailings of hell,
And this is the Voice of God.
The bright purling rill, from its fount in the
With its fresh dewy lips, as lightly it trips
Through valleys of green, and mountains be-
In an angel-like tongue sings the heavenly
That pureness of heart wiU like pleasure im-
To sing as we go through contentment or woe ;
And this is the Voice of God.
The ocean's loud peal of the waters that reel
In billows that groan in a thunder-like tone,
In every dark surge, hymns the funeral dirge
Of lost ones of time, whose bowlings now
With the hot burning spray, as it dashes
O'er an ocean of fire, so dreadful and dire ;
And this is the Voice of God.
The songs of the birds, with their melody-
That cheerily sing 'mid the bowers of Spring,
Are happy and gay, and bid us away
From the regions of time to a sunnier clime.
Where sins are unknown, and pleasures are
And sonnets are sung in a heavenly tongue ;
And this is the Voice of God.
The thunders on high, hurthng over the sky,
As if legions of hell were there batthng to
On a bright starry plain — their lost heaven to
Peal terrible wrath on their lightning-lit path,
Of the vengeance of God for this sin-smitten
When the last sun shall rise in the orient skies ;
And this is the Voice of God.
» But conscience, alone, has a far deeper tone
Than the storms or the breeze, or the thunders,
Or the birds of the spring, or the rills that may
Though silent in word, yet a language is heard
That thrills through the heart like a magical
And reproves us of sin as it whispers within ;
And this is the Voice of God.
DEATH OF THE FIRST-BORN
Midnight reigned supreme ; and silence like
The hush of death o'er Egypt's blighted fields
Was brooding then. Not even a whispering
Disturbed the withered bough. No bubbling
Nor dashing wave, nor cascade roar was there
To break the awful calm. A presage even
More fearful than the silent prelude to
An ocean tempest, hushed, or seemed to still
The breathing pulse of Nature's mighty frame.
The busy throng, in sweet repose, beneath
The shades of balmy sleep, was dreaming o'er
The scenes of hajDpier days yet mantled in
The mazy folds of coming time. The sky
With glittering stars upon her brow, was lit.
Like countless eyes of angels gazing over
The vast, eternal battlements of heaven,
The golden orbs looked calmly down, and
In mockery, on the coming scene of blood.
Traverse with me those dark and silent streets
Of ancient Zoan. Let us stop beside
That pile of gorgeous art whose summit 'mid
The gloom Of night is lost. The threshold
We pass. Within that room, with Orient
Adorned, behold the scene ! A prince arrayed
Li rich habiliments of Eastern pomp
Traverses to and fro. His brow is knit,
And quaking like an oak that shakes amid
A raging storm, he stops ; and looking up
With eyes that glare a demon's fell despair,
FIRST-BORN IN EGYPT. 97
He cries aloud : " Oh, why this deep re-
These dreary thoughts that throw a gloom
My soul more dismal than the shades of hell !
This feeling ! Oh ! this damning hour !" But
He starts ! He lists ! A groan of pain within
Another chamber comes afloat ; and then
A shrieking shakes the quiet air. He's gone ;
The heavy doors swing grating back, and
Themselves to utter sounds of coming woe.
Through corridors, with stealthy step, we
A domicile of death. The wretched prince
Is here beside the snowy folds that hang
About a rumpled couch. With palsied hand
He slowly lifts the vail ; but, dropping it.
As though a burning brand had touched his
He flies away -, and crying as he flies, —
"My dearest son — m?/ first-born child is dead."
The royal household wake — ^the servants flee —
And mother, sisters, brothers — all rush in ;
And, gazing on the pulseless form that lies
Upon that downy hed, in one loud wail
.They teU the pain of hearts hereft. But while
They mourn, that best-loved servant of the
Attempting to upraise and straighten out
The still proportions of his master's child —
His favorite boy — is stricken down as by
An unseen stroke of deadly hate. He groans.
And gasps for breath, and dies. To spread
The sad distress, as if the telling would
The grief assuage, they hasten to the streets.
But cries on every hand, more fearful, meet
The startled servants of the king. One deep
And general wail, one agonizing shriek.
In tumult louder far than thunder peal,
Groes up from every princely dome, and cot,
ri EST -BORN IN EGYPT. 99
And hovel low, and prison damp, that is
Not of the house of God.
The scene, no pen
Can e'er describe. The icy hand of death
Had scattered wide the bhghting frost that
The loveliest, brightest buds that e'er adorned
Egyptian homes. An unseen monster sped
On steeds of hghtning, to and fro, through all
The plain ; and hurling javelins whose barbs
Were steeled with death, slew thousands ere
A moment by. The groan of dying men —
The piercing cries of orphaned ones — the wail
Of parents — ^friends bereft of dearest loves —
The husband's moan — the wife's lament — the
Of lovers' bleeding hearts — the plaintive low
From herds and folds, and, as it Avere, the
Expiring groan that leaves a nation dead —
100 DEATH OF THE FIRST-BOEN.
All in one vast, unbroken howl of pain
And desperate grief, made heaven's • welkin
As though an earthquake throe had rent the
TO THE PILLAR OF FIRE.
Vast pillar of splendor ! we cannot behold
Thy stately proportions of crimson and gold,
But we start at thy form, all majestic and
While fancies to revel their pinions expand.
And hast thou, a fragment, asunder been riven.
From arches of splendor that glitter in heaven ?
Or, rent by a stroke of Omnipotent might,
From walls that encircle the City of Light ?
And hast thou by cohorts of angels been
From the confines of glory to save the forlorn V
102 TO THE PILLAR OF FIRE.
Ah, hark ! to the tones that so strangely
With echoing words of prophetical sound !
" The earth is my home, and a prophet's my
I come as an angel of truth to proclaim
That Sinai's summit in lightning shall glare,
And Moses receive the bright decalogue there ;
" Blood freely shall flow from a Saviour's own
And Calvary in crimson shall deeply he dyed ;
That darkness dwells only where sinners are
While glory emblazons the mansions of
THE SPIRIT TEMPLE
Within a good man's heart — a temple built by
God is there,
Built not of marble-stone and cedar-wood,
adorned with costly care, —
But built of spirit more enduring far, and
decked with love,
Whose drapery bright, with gem and gold, by
seraphim was wove.
Within that temple, radiant more than human
tongue can teU,
A soft, melodious voice unceasing whispers,
104 THE SPIRIT-TEMPLE.
An angel-band, with harps in hand, take np
the joyful strain.
And every throbbing pulse repeats those peace-
ful words again.
And thus, within the good man's heart, a Spirit-
Erected by Almighty Grod, and burnished with
his hands —
A temple where his presence is, and where his
angels dwell —
Where peaceful joys, from harp and voice, for
ever sweetly swell.
Not so — ^not so — within the heart of selfishness
and sin —
A temple built by God is there, but nothing
No drapery hangs there richly wove by hands
of heavenly love.
And glittering bright with precious gems from
sapphire hills above.
THE SPIRIT- TEMPLE. 105
No band of angels sweetly sing, and strike
their harps of gold,
But all above, beneath, around, is desolate and
The only voices in the heart are bickering
words of hell,
And there malignant passions rage, and there
In the morning of time, 'mid the Eden of
Was Purity throned in her own native bowers ;
But alas, the fair princess is exiled from
Dethroned by a tyrant soon after her birth.
When Satan by conquest enslaved the whole
And o'er the vast kingdom his banner un-
furled ; ^
Then Purity plumed her fair pinions of love,
And sighed as she fled to the Eden above.
A note of that sorrow still whispers within,
Reminding the heart of its thraldom in sin ;
A tear of regret, like a dew-drop of even,
She left on the sky, in ascending to heaven ;
This tear-drop on high was the radiant star
That on Bethlehem shone from the zenith afar.
TO A YOUNG LADY,
LAMENTING THAT SHE MUST GROW OLD.
Though years may dart, like arrows, by,
And pain and care wring many a sigh,
Though beauty fade, and pleasures flee,
And spirit lose its wonted glee,
Yet there's a pearl of priceless worth
More precious than the gems of earth,
That can assuage the ills of time.
And make our suffering life sublime ;
And she who owns this priceless prize
Can purchase beauty in the skies: —
Can clothe herself in fadeless youth,
And bask in smiles of love and truth.
TO A YOUNG LADY. 109
Can sing the sweetest songs on liigh,
And harp with angels through the sky :
Then, fair one, seek that priceless gem
To wear a heavenly diadem.
THE PRAYER OF ELIJAH.
The earth was dry, was blighted and bare,
The sky was pale, and heated the air ;
The briny sea rolled heavy and slow,
And rills and rivers no longer did flow.
The forest was stript, its beauty gone.
And birds away from the branches flown ;
The flowers were withered, parched, and dried.
And famiae and death stalked side by side.
The moon looked sad on her pale white throne.
And stars shone dim in their crystal zone ;
The turbid sea, with a moaning surge,
Went pealing on earth's funeral dirge ;
THE PRAYEE OF ELIJAH. Ill
The odor from thousands rottening there,
Filled every breeze, and poisoned the air ;
The world, as it seemed, a grave would be,
And a charnel-house, the dark blue sea.
An aged prophet, at morning light
Toiled up with his staff, Mount Carmel's height;
From earlj morn, until burning noon,
That veteran saint knelt there alone ;
With hands uplifted, and streaming eyes,
His earnest words rent even the skies :
He groaned in prayer, for a starving race.
That rain might water that burning place.
A servant hard by the prophet stood
To watch the sky, and the stagnant flood.
The holy man continued to pray,
Till shadows told the decline of day ;
But, ere the sigh of the last deep prayer, '
Had died away on the evening air.
The servant cried in the wildest glee —
" My master, lo ! a sign on the sea !"
112 THE PRAYER OF ELIJAH.
A fleecy fold — a handful of spray
Rose up from the ocean's trackless way ;
Its downy form grew darker and wide,
And cast a shade of gloom on the tide.
An hour passed by, and that cloud so small,
Had blackened the sky with its sombre pall.
'Mid darkness, and storms that rent the air —
The thunder's crash, and the lightning's glare—
The moaning winds, and the reeling shore —
The rending rocks, and the ocean's roar —
The heavens burst, and the falling rain
Restored to beauty the sterile plain.
The fountains flowed, and the rills along
Ran singing again their playful song ;
The forest once more was clothed in green,
And flowerets fair by the way were seen —
The yielding field bloomed now as before.
And plenty smiled as in days of yore ;
But earth so fruitful, lovely, and fair.
Kind Heaven made'for the prophet's prayer.
THE OLD YEAR.
Another year has fled away to dream
Amid the shadows of the past — shadows
That flit o'er moldering tombs of buried hopes
Like dismal spectres. Born, twelve months
At midnight's lonely hour, its infant robes
Were spotless snow, thick set with icy gems.
Its only lullabies were howling winds,
While Nature cradled it in wintry storms.
It grew to childhood, and leaped forth joyously
Amid the fragrant flowers and balmy breezes ;
By purling streams it sported free ; and basked
'Neath sunny skies that brighten vernal hours.
114 THE OLD YEAR.
It grew to manhood, gathered summer fruits
And wrought the toilsome labors of the field.
But Autumn paled his cheeks, and marked his
And hent his form. The winter of his age.
Ere long, came chill. It snowed upon his
And numbed his limbs. Wearied now of
He oft reclined upon his narrow couch
And sang with trembling voice the fleeting
Of earth —
The fragrant flower
Has passed away ;
It bloomed an hour,
But to decay.
The streamlet flows
Not now so free ;
What shrank the rose.
Has hushed its glee.
THE OLD YEAR. 115
The balmy breeze
Has ceased to blow,
And the green trees
Refuse to grow.
The winds are wild,
And chill the air ;
The forest mild
Is drear and bare.
The vaUey bright
With beauty dressed —
The mountain height
With waving crest,
Are drear and bare.
And tell the tale
That all tilings fair
Must fade and fail.
The landscape scene
Has lost its light
Of glowing green
And tints all bright.
116 THE OLD YEA K.
The sky is now
More dreary far ;
Its azure brow
«Shows not a star.
The shady bowers —
The fair retreat
Of smiling flowers
Where lovers meet,
Have faded fast,
And sadly moan
For pleasures past,
And inmates gone.
And friends are dead
And fortunes flown.
And joys are fled,
And hopes are gone.
But soon, I too,
Shall be no more —
Shall bid adieu
To this vain shore.
THE OLD YEAR. 117
The year was old, and whitened for the tomb ;
He trembled 'neath his snowy hair upon
The margin of the grave — and died. Bright
Of happiness unseen, and schemes of vain
Ambition, lay like withered flowers on
His lifeless form that sleeps the silent sleep
Of death. But 'tis thus with earth, whose
Is sealed — to fade, and droop, and pass away.